Daily Devotions

Daily Devotions

Surprises in Jesus' Family Tree

Title:  Surprises in Jesus' Family Tree

Reading for October 1:  Matthew 1-4

The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
Matthew 1:1

If you've read much of the Bible, you know there are lots of genealogies in it, lists of names that seem to go on and on. They can be a challenge to read. Many times we're tempted to skip these lists to get to the more interesting reading, but when we do this we miss some real gems.

Naturally, the genealogy of Jesus Christ is the most important of all such genealogies in the Bible, and it is in his family tree that we see some of the heavyweights of the Bible, men like David and Abraham. But we also find some women in this family tree (and women were rarely mentioned in ancient genealogies), and the women that are listed are surprising to us.

Take Rahab for example (Matthew 1:5). She was a harlot. In fact, of the eight times her name is mentioned in the Bible, five of those times she is called "Rahab, the harlot" (Joshua 2:1; 6:17, 25; Hebrews 11:31; James 2:25).

Then there is "the wife of Uriah" (Matthew 1:6). We know her as Bathsheba, but Matthew doesn't call her by that name. He makes sure we remember that she was really the wife of another man before David took her away from her husband, later giving birth to David's son, Solomon.

One of the more positive characters mentioned is Ruth (Matthew 1:5), whom we rightly admire for her love and dedication to her mother-in-law. But let us not forget that Ruth was a Moabite woman, a Gentile.

What do we learn from these three women? We learn that God can use anyone to bring about his purposes. He enjoys choosing the despised and rejected of this world to accomplish great things.  

We praise you, our Father, for choosing the foolish in the world to shame the wise, the weak in the world to shame the strong, and the low and despised. Thank you for choosing us.